Learning in the workplace key in new unit

A new Monash education unit is set to focus on workplace learning

The Monash Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is launching a new organisational unit focused specifically on learning in the workplace, from commencing student to advanced practitioner. 

The Experiential Development and Graduate Education unit (or “EDGE”) will expand the Faculty’s successful Postgraduate Studies and Professional Development Unit to include the broader remit of strengthening the connections between education and practice.

EDGE is aimed at improving links across all experiential programs at the faculty and at all points in the practitioner development pathway. It will recognise the importance of lifelong learning by bridging activity between the Faculty’s new undergraduate degree and its pharmacist graduate programs, which include the Intern Training Program, Intern Foundation Program and Master of Clinical Pharmacy.

EDGE will be led by Associate Professor Kirstie Galbraith, an international expert in practitioner development.

“EDGE is designed to cater to the changing reality of the pharmacy workforce, and better reflect the nexus between experiential development, education and ongoing practitioner development,” A/Prof Galbraith says.

In part, the change has been prompted by the launch of the Faculty’s new course, the Bachelor of Pharmacy (Hons)/ Master of Pharmacy, of which a key feature is early and enhanced experiential training.

It is also a response to recent initiatives from the International Pharmaceutical Federation, which last year ratified 13 global Pharmaceutical Workforce Development Goals. Five of these goals have a specific focus on professional development of the pharmaceutical workforce, and provide strategies to strengthen health systems toward improved patient care.

“This new approach will enable a stronger focus on collaborations with workplace partners,” Associate Professor Galbraith says.

“We can better recognise the contribution they make to experiential development, and it ensures our students have a much richer appreciation of the context in which their learning is to be applied. For our preceptors and Clinical Educators it means greater insight into students’ skill development, and for our students it ensures exemplary preparation for internship and registration,” she says.

Students enrolled in programs at the faculty will have a seamless pathway throughout their undergraduate program and internship, Monash says, and into practitioner development pathways supported by graduate master’s programs.

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